So. Sherlock Holmes. I grew up with Sherlock Homes, mainly through the Jeremy Brett and Basil Rathbone interpretations and through the books on tape of Doyle’s original stories. Then there were the Robert Downey Jr. movies. And of course BBC’s “Sherlock,” which is, let’s face it, fantastic. So basically, I feel like good ol’ Sherlock and I are like this at this point. Which made me excited/nervous to read “Locked,” because there’s a lot for it to live up to. And it felt a bit, I don’t know, daring, I guess, for Eva Morgan to try to create a young Sherlock that would be believable as Sherlock Holmes while also being believable as a teenager.
Locked is the story of a broken girl and the genius who gives her life back to her. It's the story of a witty asshole who's never known love, and the girl who shows him what love means. It's the story of an unexpected connection, two people who save each other, and the importance of seeing the goodness underneath.
But here’s the thing: she totally manages to do it. I was legitimately impressed with how she kept Sherlock sherlock-y while also making him her own character. I pretty much grinned my way through all the scenes with Sherlock because he’s all genius-y and fact driven and unemotional and frustrating, but at the same time unintentionally hilarious and increasingly human. And he’s a great texter. The texts he sends Irene were basically my favorite part.
Irene is likeable as well. She’s a charismatic narrator, despite the hard time she’s going through. Sometimes main characters who are depressed can be a bit hard to read for me, but Irene grabbed me from pretty much the first page. And part of that, I know, is because the book is so well written. It’s really engaging and readable, and despite there being some typos and other errors in the version I read, they didn’t put me off at all, because the storytelling was so well done (though I understand that the text has been cleaned up in more recent versions). Irene does get a little over-dramatic at the end, but not quite to the point where it was truly annoying.
Overall, I kind of adore this iteration of Sherlock Holmes. It keeps all the things that make Sherlock Sherlock while still being a unique interpretation of the story and characters. It's turned out to be one of those books that I can't help recommending to people. I’m totally up for more books in this series.
Rating: 4 / 5
Copy received for review.